The ballgame experience is about so much more than the game itself. It’s the people you’re with, the food you eat and whether you were in the bathroom for that three-run homer in the seventh. It’s the weather, the atmosphere and the trip to and from the stadium. It’s the full experience, and all of it matters to some degree.
In the Bronx, Yankee Stadium is a monster. In a lot of ways, it seems over-the-top by design. It’s huge — from the video board to the Steinbrenner monument — but what else would you expect from the biggest name in baseball? For me, it’s a comfortable place to work, and the two times I’ve watched a game from the seats — when my best friend was in town two years ago, and when my parents were here last year — I’ve enjoyed it.
It’s hard for me to compare the new place to the old one because I wasn’t at the old Yankee Stadium enough, but I don’t think the current Yankee Stadium is a bad one. Like Matthew pointed out in this morning’s Pinch Hitter post, the stadium has its flaws, one of which is that it’s not a perfect replica of a stadium fans knew and loved for decades.
But the ballgame experience really is about more the game itself, and it’s about more than the stadium itself. My three favorite road trips are probably Minnesota, Oakland and Tampa Bay, and those three have little to do with the stadiums or the teams. My sister lives 10 miles — at most — from the Oakland Coliseum, my girlfriend lives in Minneapolis and I’ve spent so much time in Tampa that it feels like a second home.
Yes, Yankee Stadium is flawed, but so is every other stadium in the country. And my guess is that you still have a good time going to the ballpark, and that it starts to feel a little more like home the more times you go.
Associated Press photo